Today the team split in 2 different ways. The part of the team that had been doing VBS at the bottom of the hill was charged with finished the inside of the house while the part of the team that had been doing the majority of the labor was pulled to the Seville Community Center. Those that worked on the home had a great time and the people up there are so excited that the house so close to completion. One of our team members (Cindy) continued a conversation with the sweet lady that we are building the house for. She is confused as to what is the real truth. There are so many different religions/cults here fighting for the peoples attention. Jehovah Witness, Seventh Day Adventist, Rastafarian, the world all have their own truths. Our prayer and we ask you pray as well as that Jesus would reveal Himself to her as the Way, the Truth and the Life!
The rest of us at the Seville Community Center were in for hard work. All the major buildings here in Jamaica are concrete, so there is a lot of sand and rocks and water involved. Its not like in the USA where we go get bags of premixed stuff, it all has to be mixed by hand. The community center started 2 years ago because the community didn’t want a church. It will be 2 stories and be a place where kids, adults, and families will be able to learn and relax. Now the community is wanting a church and it will serve as the church in the community (God is moving in the community for a long term presence). Our job today was to get sand from the second floor down to the ground level so that concrete could be mixed next week. A bucket brigade of 20 started moving, and toting, and carrying buckets of sand for 3 solid hours! Sand broke apart by pickaxe, shoveled into a bucket, picked up over one wall, carried to and over another wall, down over the side of the building to a pile of sand. My estimates are of no less than 350 buckets of sand. The hope is to have the community center completed in two years and to get to comeback and hold events in the community center or the people. I would really like to get to preach a sermon in the center.
After lunch we headed out to the infirmary. We were prepared for the worst. And yes, it was a bit rough, but honestly I have seen worst in the states. But as always God has something in store for us to learn. For me it was a young man named Ryan. Ryan broke his back when he was 2. He fell out of a tub and down a hill and lost function of his legs because his mom didn’t take him to the doctor. Scoliosis set in, his back is a mess and he is embarrassed to sit up because of how it make him look, now both of his kidneys have failed. His only hope is found in Jesus. God has him there for a purpose and Ryan knows his purpose. To be used by God in place where most won’t even enter the door. For others it was a sweet lady singing as loud as should could about Christ.
Later in the afternoon a few of us headed out find one of the old friends of the missions (Ted went looking for Popeye, I can’t make this stuff up). When Popeye saw Ted, he got crazy excited, jumping up and down, hugging and pulling on Ted. Ted’s face lite up too. It was worth the 2 mile walk down an odd little dirt path just to see this happen.
This island is great and I love the people. I’m telling you, as much as I love people, I cannot get over the warmth of these people. Pray for our team tomorrow as we finish up the house and present the keys tomorrow. She will also get a bed and she doesn’t know it yet but a gas stove. My prayers are for her salvation and to allow my team to get to experience the full fruit of salvation, yet we will walk away knowing we have planted the seed of the Gospel deep into the soil.